FRANKFURT, Germany (April 19, 2016) — Investigators probing Volkswagen Group's diesel-emissions cheating are struggling to make headway through data secured from more than 1,500 laptops that includes obscure company code words, according to people familiar with the status of the investigation.
This means it's unlikely there will be a complete report on the car maker's emissions cheating by the end of the month when VW is due to report 2015 earnings, the sources added.
The probe has been slowed by the use of dozens of code words, including “acoustic software,” for the illicit technology Volkswagen used to turn off pollution controls when cars were on the road, said the sources, who asked not to be identified because the investigation is confidential.
The confusion along with partly insufficient and outdated computer systems made it difficult to find evidence concrete enough to hold individual employees accountable, they said.
About 450 internal and external investigators have focused on about 20 employees linked to the deception, according to the people familiar with the probe, which is being led by U.S. law firm Jones Day with assistance from Deloitte L.P. Proceedings have dragged on because many interviewees were reluctant to provide insight due to fear of the legal consequences, said the sources.